If you missed the season 2 premiere of This Is Us last night, either because you were busy or because you were trying to spare yourself the heartache – chances are, you’ve seen headlines concerning the series and the ‘big clue’ we got into Jack’s death.
There was a fire, and to understand what Dan Fogelman had to say about the mysteries that were birthed from that fire, you have to understand the heartache in the last scenes. You can read our review of the episode here.
Now that you’re caught up, we have to admit, we were thrown for a loop as the episode started to draw to a close, but we did enjoy that whole…2-second window of happiness before it was ripped away. You know which one we mean.
To be honest, when Rebecca knocked on the door for the second time and told Jack that they’d fix everything together, we thought we’d missed that ‘clue’ into how he passed. We expected the episode to end then, so to see her driving in a car with Jack, and then to see her in a car with only his belongings was heartwrenching. Then…the camera panned out to show the entire home he’d built for her burnt down, and she wailed, and our hearts broke.
That was it, that was the moment that absolutely solidified to us that we are not at all ready to understand the full story of Jack’s death.
When we were able to stop crying, we realized that the other part of the final two minutes was important as well. So we thought about what else we learned, even if we haven’t pieced it together yet.
Kate was sobbing while holding a dog and Randall was crying while holding hands with a girlfriend. Miguel appeared shocked and Kevin was out with Sophie, also sporting a cast on his leg. Kate needed to tell Kevin herself that their father died, and she blames herself.
It seems that we’ve been left with more questions than we had answered, but that was Fogelman’s plan from the start. In fact, today he told EW that there were 5 big mysteries at the end of the episode.
There are five big mysteries, as I see it, at the end. Clearly, the house is a big mystery. Was he in the house? Was he out of the house? What exactly transpired on that night? They’re staying at Miguel’s. That’s interesting. He’s distraught. You’ve got Kate holding a little dog that we’ve never seen before. What is that dog? Where did that come from? You’ve got Randall seemingly being comforted in profile by a red-headed girl we’ve never seen. Who is that person? What is going on? And then you’ve got…
Kevin’s cast. And you’ve got Kate, who clearly in the episode, Kevin says to Toby, “She was the one who told me my father died.” And then in that flashback, she said, “We have to find Kevin. He has to hear it from me.” And you see Kevin in a cast, making out with Sophie., and you’re saying, “What’s with the broken leg?” So there’s a lot to unpack.
Then there’s the fact that Jack’s belongings didn’t look burnt, so…what gives?
I can’t give away a lot… but what can I say is: What you’re watching is something that happened on that night. So every single thing you’re seeing — when we eventually get to that night, and it will be somewhere in this season — will be from what you saw the last minute and a half of the show.
Fogelman also said that the way you find out the information and in what timeframe, well, it’ll all make sense when it’s meant to. He’s planned the storyline down to the smallest detail, so every single piece of information that we have now, we have for a reason.
When you think about it like that, more questions start to grow in your mind, but you just have to do what the cast has recommended since the very beginning. Focus on Jack’s life, think about who he is to the family, both in his life and his death, and know that he’s not going anywhere, even once we find out the last piece to the puzzle.
Did you pick up on the 5 mysteries? Which one do you hope to uncover first? Let us know.
‘…but I knew him’